The Vocabulary of Car Collecting

Some old cars are just old. Some are donated to charity, if charity will take them. Others are given up during community clean-ups and some make the journey to the wrecking yard. But a few actually increase in value. There are old cars bringing higher prices than they did when new.

When you search the net or talk to experienced collectors you will come across labels such as antique cars, vintage cars, classic cars, muscle cars, pony cars. And every one of these has been sought after by a collector.

You will see ads in prestigious magazines such as Forbes identifying the top ten classic cars and the top ten vintage cars. On Sunday afternoon, it is not uncommon to see a club out for a rally. And there is a club for every car category.

But what constitutes an antique, a vintage or a classic? Some definitions have been established but there are also times when the definition is the product of the definer. And often times the definitions don’t agree.

For example, the Antique Automobile Club of America defines an antique car as any car over 25 years old. However, outside the club it is defined as those cars manufactured from the start of development through 1916.

Vintage cars are designated as those produced between 1916 and 1924.

Classic cars are a confusing mix. There are almost as many definitions as there are definers. Some categorize a classic car as one produced from 1925 until today. For certain, to become a classic car, it has to be appreciated and sought after by a significant number of people.

Even auto thieves have their say as to what is and isn’t classic. World wide, auto thieves exhibit a definite preference for Japanese manufactured automobiles. In a ‘Top Ten’ list, auto thieves were found to favor the Honda Civic, Toyota Century, Honda Accord, Accura Integra, the Toyota pickup, and the Nissan Sentra. The other four cars on the list were American. No European cars were listed. However, the content was probably influenced by the location of the list maker and the home base of the thieves.

But European makes, notably the 1954 Mercedes 300SL, the 1966 Porsche 911, the 1961 Jaguar XKE, and the Volvo 1800 E are on a top ten list of vintage cars.

The demand for vintage car advertisements also furnishes a clue as to what is and isn’t popular.

The Classic Car Club of America defines a Classic as: “a fine or distinctive automobile, either American or foreign built, produced between 1925 and 1948.” Classics should be cars that were built in small quantities and high priced when new. The club maintains a list of classics.

The club also readily admits that their definition may not be followed. A look at Forbes top ten will corroborate that statement.

And then the government enters the arena as most states in the United States have laws for defining antiques, vintage, and classics for the purpose of vehicle registration.

So what really appears to determine a classic is popularity. If enough people fall in love with a junkyard relic and desire to own and restore it, that auto will become a classic.

However, there is one certainty. Whether antiques, vintage, or classic, these cars will appreciate in value as years pass.

Collecting Your News and Information Online

Today the print media is having economic troubles, as advertisers migrate to online venues. Of course, the print media is diversifying quickly and moving towards the Internet themselves. Still, you cannot get all your print media online all the time. Some magazines are only in paper form and if you want to stay on top of information and news, you will need a wide range of trade journals and popular magazines to do this. But how can you get all the magazines you want to read?

There are many strategies one can employ to getting access to such magazines. Trade Magazines can often be ordered online for free, while others can be picked up at Industry Trade Shows and then signing up there. Spending one to two days a month at a major bookstore coffee shop allows you to scan through Magazines and take notes, looking up the rest of the information online later.

Many magazines now have an online versions, which is sent by email, not all of it, such as classified ads or contributed byline filler articles, is online, but reading online and occasionally at a bookstore will keep you up to date. If you cannot find a specific trade journal or magazine each month, then even every other month or quarter will keep you up to speed.

Industries are a lot slower to change than one might think. New innovations remain topics for 4-6 months covering all the angles, marketing and exploits. It is not as difficult as it looks. As the coordinator for the Online Think Tank, it is literally my job to stay abreast of information in industry, government, non-profit sector and around the world. Below are the magazines that I review to do just that.

Foreign Affairs

Aviation Week and Space Technology

Nasa TechBriefs

Avionics

Airport Business

Ground Support

Composite Technologies

Coatings World

Pollution Equipment News

Inbound Logistics

PDF Plastics Distributor and Fabricator

Health Management Technology

Campus Technology

Speech Technology Magazine

Microwave Journal

Photonics

Lightwave

RFID Journal

Telephony

Government Video

Federal Computer Week

B to B (online marketing)

Wired

The Economist

Global Finance

Financial Times

Wall Street Journal

Investors Business Daily

Harvard Business Review

CFO

Financial Advisor

CIO

Advertising Age

Broadband Properties

Professional Builder

Architectual Digest

Clean Rooms

Foreign Affairs

Florida Trend’s Business Florida

Hispanic Business

Red Herring

Desktop Engineering

Scientific American

Science AAAS

Popular Science

Popular Mechanics

National Oil and Lube News

Octane, Canada’s Car Wash and Petroleum Magazine

Commercial Carrier Journal

Transport Topics

Overdrive

Tire Business

Mobile-Tech News and Views

Professional Carwash Magazine

Modern Car Care

Detailers Digest

American Window Cleaner

Westways by AAA

Family Motor Coaching

Flying

Private Pilot

Cyclist

Runner’s World

TX H2O

Mayflower Quarterly

Obviously, not everyone will have such a robust periodical reading list, nor should they, as it can take up a bit of time each month. Nevertheless, the same strategies should be employed by those who seek information or consider themselves news junkies – Think on this, and see what you come up with.

Auto Repair and Staying on Top of It

For every car owner regular maintenance is necessary and you may also need to make some auto repairs on the road. But, for everyone making such repairs is not an easy option as many of us do not know anything about car engine and other electrical problems. For anyone who is unknown to the problems, making a simple repair may seem a huge task. Most of these problems may need you to perform a very simple operation like changing the brake line, changing the battery or even changing engine or brake fluids. For anyone who usually visit a mechanic whatever their car starts acting up this guide may be a huge help as it provides simple tips for auto repair.

Gather enough knowledge- in order to make successful simple small repairs on your own car you must make yourself knowledgeable in order to diagnose the problem correctly. As fidgeting under the hood without proper knowledge may make the situation worse and actually have you pay more money. The necessary knowledge for making small repairs can easily be collected from sources like automotive magazines, auto repair manuals, books and even the Internet. Most of these resources provide excellent information regarding making small repairs.

Get yourself a decent toolkit- in order to make the repair you must also have the necessary tools that are required to make the actual repair. Just like a square peg does not fit in a round hole, not every screwdriver or wrench opens every nut or bolt. Manufactures like Stanley and Snap has some very excellent tool kits for old world auto repair.

Always get original spare parts- while third-party spare parts can cost you a lot less during purchase but, they may actually harm your engine in the long run. This can essentially get you spending more money to get your car repaired ultimately. Also using third-party spare parts and void your warranty agreement and also create problems in claiming insurance due to damages caused by those spare parts.

Keep a regular maintenance schedule- in order to minimize or prepare costs it is always advisable that you maintain your car regularly as often small niggles can flare up and ultimately can have you paying way too much money for the final repairs.

Following a few simple steps you can actually minimize auto repair costs, though at first it may seem that you are actually spending more money but after getting the proper tools and knowledge you can save a lot of money in repairs.